What’s on this weekend?
Vuvuzelas at the ready – Europe’s biggest street festival is rolling into town for two days of blasting soundsystems, non-stop dancing and some of the best Carribean food around. Whether you want a chilled Carnival or are looking to party into the early hours, be sure to check out our complete guide to all things Notting Hill Carnival.
Inspired by the Museum of London’s ‘Beasts of London’ exhibition. See Smithfield Market filled with aerial artists swinging from Smithfield Canopy, watch dancing giant bird puppets, bands and dog shows. Man’s (and woman’s) best friend are invited too.
Go back in time at Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens and join the Victorian vibes on the green. This free day out will feature all the fun and games commonly found back in the nineteenth century. Expect tightrope, stilt-walkers and Victorian strongmen.
Head to Beckenham Place Park’s Georgian mansion where there’ll be 25 top vintage traders setting up shop in the pretty pastel-hued rooms selling travel posters, prints and clothes. Hungry after all that shopping? Tuck into the sizzling selection of street food stands.
A slightly bonkers series of events in Shoreditch dedicated to William Shakespeare. Go see a group of people doing the downward dog in ruff collars.
Get your huge hit of nostalgia thanks to this outdoor screening of films nearing their third decade. From children’s cult classic ‘Jumanji’ through to intertwining narratives of Tarantino’s ‘Pulp Fiction’, there’s a flick for all.
A woozy, humane journey in a jaded filmmaker’s soul. Pedro Almodóvar fills this tapestry of recollections with bold colours and infuses them with emotion. It will pierce your heart.
Those dog days will never be over, not when it happens to be National Dog Day on Monday. Celebrate canine friends at Flat Iron Square’s pooch-themed party. Bring your pup along to enter them into The Dog Factor (there are prizes for the Baddest Bitch).
Celebrate Afro-Portuguese culture at this four-day arts festival. Take part in dance workshops in Kizomba, Semba, Ginga, Afro and Afrobeats, watch theatre performances and screenings, and browse the Afro Marketplace.
Small ya later Barking! Get to know east London’s industrial past through the power of small. Sewage, fish and the scent of a fizzy pop factory will all be on display for you to take a whiff at.
Fancy trying a bunch of new brews in the Stow? Then you’re in luck because there’ll be a hefty selection of suds at the Contemporary Cask Fest. Plus, other options for those who don’t hail the ale and posh cheese toasties from Wine ‘n’ Rind.
What’s that coming over the hill? Is it The Monster? Is it The Monster? By monster, we mean a giant inflatable obstacle course for adults. Now’s your chance to zoom down an 18-metre mega slide.
This joyful hip hop show for kids is guaranteed to make you come out humming too. Watch along and learn about the decade-hopping dance masterclass covering all styles from vogueing arms to classy breaking and krumping.
Deck your home out with 1970s gems. This flea is ideal for eclectic vintage treasures such as costume jewellery, fabrics, salvaged furniture, old maps, reclaimed fixtures and fittings.
One of London’s prettiest parks has been transformed into a massive outdoor gallery once again courtesy of the free Frieze Sculpture. Go in search of Huma Bhabha’s totem-inspired ‘Receiver’ and a posthumous showing of Robert Indiana’s ‘One Through Zero’.
Head for late-night drinks at this gin distillery and bar on Mare Street. It’s open well into the early hours. The best thing? There’s a regularly changing array of 12 wines on tap, gin distilled on site and a swell cocktail list.
Romeo, where art thou Romeo? Well, the traditional Shakespeare play you know and love so well, has been given the Matthew Bourne treatment. Prokofiev’s iconic ballet is a reinvented classic.
London might have reached peak Italian carby goodness, but if you haven’t tried the pasta at Artusi you need to get there right away. You’ll regularly find things like puntarelle and anchovy salad on the menu, along with very very good pasta and plenty of meat in the mains.
Head to Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club to get a headstart on the Carnival activities. This QTIPOC-friendly spectacle is sure to be one great, soca and bashment-fuelled night that will get you in the mood for the west London proceedings.
Swifties unite! Boogie the night away to Taylor Swift hit after Taylor Swift hit. Swiftogeddon will be manning the decks and taking revellers all the way through Swifty’s back catalogue, including deep cuts, extended mixes, fan favourites and all the hits. Just don’t expect any Kanye.
Clutch your ChapStick (for when your ‘lips hurt real bad!’) and get ready to dance to Jamiroquai’s ‘Canned Heat’ in joy, as the 2004 cult classic is getting the Meals on Reels treatment. Think: tater tots, corn dogs, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, extra cheesy nachos and a slap-worthy steak.
Enter the world of Thra at this special exhibition. See setpieces from the series (like the Skeksis banquet) and meet the puppets modelled on Jim Hensons’s original creations. Let the nerd child of ’80s within you be free.
Time to re-e-wind at this queer-friendly party. Get ready to two-step until the early hours of the morning as party starters Gay Garage will bring you a rundown of favourite old school tunes for a whole seven-and-a-half hours.
Catford’s circus-themed nightspot channels a festival theme. As such, grab some street food and stay up late among acrobats and actors.
Venture into the Upside Down as Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes get a ‘Stranger Things’-themed makeover, complete with 80s synth bangers spinning all night long.
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